Maps & Atlases

Apr 3, 2013 Daytrotter Studio, Rock Island, IL

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Maps & Atlases

Words by Sean Moeller, Illustration by Johnnie Cluney, Recording engineered by Mike Gentry

There's a wonderful passage in a John Baskin book about memory and times that have gone by, more specifically about our inability to recognize them appropriately. They are glorified rather than seen for what they really were. It's a bit of how Maps & Atlases like their tales to go. They detail times that have been refreshed, but they do deal with reminiscence frankly as well, offering them up as shaky recollection. They deal with people and all of their erroneous manner. They are salted ghosts and cured wounds. They are all guided by flickering lights, finding that they're able to give everything past and present a new finish, even if it's one that ignores what might actually be or have been. These are rehabilitated times and remembrances - shone in beautiful new colors, ones that give off better intentions and flashes of something a little more toothy, smiley.

Baskin writes, "We are fond of looking backward and glorifying the past. We are very sentimental about the countryside these days, forgetting that the farm once gave us overworked hearts, little profit, and an early grave. Looking backward, we see the high spots. The low places are obscured. Candor is lacking. Why is the past glorified? The crawfish swims backward because he isn't going anyplace and he likes to see where he's been. We old-timers are like that."

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